Transport and Communication

In the NE Region, the total population of a little over 47 million covering an area of 2, 62, 00 sq.km and the total length of different types of road is 3,76,819 km. out of which the length of National Highway around 13,500 km (as per the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways data published in August 2012) and the average road density per 100 Sq Km of area is 143.72Km against the national average of 115.30 Km. The cost of maintenance of these roads is also much more than the national average due to the terrain, soil types, high rainfall, long duration of monsoon and shorter working season of maximum five months or so. The region is prone to landslides and earthquakes which further add to the cost of maintenance.

It is a fact that due to the unique topographical diversity in such a small area with sparsely distributed population in small hamlets, where the locations of habitations varies from about 20 meters from Mean Sea Level to more than 5,000 meters, the requirement of such huge length of road connectivity cannot be ruled out. The revenue collection of the States is small to repair the roads regularly and the States have to depend on the central funding to a great extent to run the affairs of the States, like the salaries of its employees. This is one of the basic reasons for the under development and also partly for the growing unrest in some parts of the region.